Sunday, July 11, 2010

}"Obama snub" email debunked

I got this video e-mailed to me today by my brother-in-law because he likes to needle me about Obama.

And here is the text of the email that accompanied the video (NOT by my brother-in-law since he just forwarded it):

I guess to some people you cannot bow...
Keep your eye on Obama's hand and face
Watch this 10-second video where a lineup of leading Russians refuse to shake his hand. Did you see this on ABC,
This is "hard ball" Soviet Style. After the third handshake refusal,,,it becomes obvious. The facial expression is priceless.
"I guess we're no longer in Chicago."
And, how in the world did Katie Couric, Charlie Gibson, Diane Sawyer et al, miss this? If it had been Bush, think the media would cover it??
Anyone ever seen a Head of State snubbed like this? It speaks volumes.
Maybe Obama should apologize for the U.S. some more. It sure seems to be working great so far!

OK, then.
But the problem with the video, it seems is that it does not show Obama being snubbed by Russians at all. In fact, in the video it is the American delegation that is not shaking the president's hand - and for good reason! Because he is introducing them to the Russian leader and gesturing with his hand - not trying to shake their hands.

Snopes does a good job debunking this particular email. They also show an unedited video from the meeting in which you see Obama enter the room and immediatley shake hands with all the members of the Russian delegation.

Another irony is that while the email claims you did not see this on MSNBC among other stations - the video is, in fact, a close up of a broadcast off of MSNBC which you can see if you search "Obama snub" on Youtube.

OK, so I understand why people fall for this stuff. It's because it shows them or tells them something that they WANT to believe and therefore they eagerly grasp it.
But who is behind emails like this? Whe makes this stuff up? It seems unlikely that it was a benign mistake. Rather, based on the careful editing and zooming in to obscure the context, they must have known that it was B.S. And yet, they put it out anyway. Why? Were they paid to do so? It would seem that there is whole cottage industry out there churning this stuff out to feed the innumberable outlets for rightwing media - including the near monopoly on Talk Radio and the dozens of rightwing shows on cable news channels - particulary phony Faux News.

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